Happy first birthday, Nailpolish Stories, my colorful, unpredictable, and growing baby. To celebrate, I am re-running the first nailpolish story which went live September 5th, 2011. Thank you, readers and contributors, for your trust, your enthusiasm, and your continued love of small sparkly things. And for allowing this literary babe to become a toddler.
Posh Trash by Nicole Monaghan
We wrapped borrowed scarves around our curved hips, as if that were payment. Mom snapped her gum, looked into our eyes, sorry, asked about lay-away.
Nicole Monaghan is founding and managing editor of Nailpolish Stories and editor of Stripped, A Collection of Anonymous Flash (PS Books 2011). Her first collection of short fiction, Want, Wound is the 2012 winner of the Burning River Press Annual Fiction Contest and is forthcoming in spring, 2013. Visit her at
Show Me The Ring by Bruce Harris
The payday was smaller than the town. Whatever. For the first time, I was clean. “You ready?” my trainer asked. I responded with four words.
Bruce Harris enjoys relaxing with a Marxman
Three pieces byAnnmarie Lockhart
you made me
like birth marks
or tumors caught early
sitting on the
surface, superficial spots
up with powder
or excised clean and quick
not a gem
but a base
on the field
a high fly
hit over the wall
through Mrs. J’s
on the tree
BT + AG
on each other
a lifetime later
Annmarie Lockhart is the founding editor of vox poetica, an online literary salon dedicated to bringing poetry into the every day, and the founder of unbound CONTENT, an independent press for a boundless age. A lifelong resident of Bergen County NJ, she lives, works, and writes 2 miles east of the hospital where she was born.
Up Front and Personal by Jody
He looks at me, I stare back.
He’s handsome. There’s tension.
I gasp as his hands touch my chest,
then shove me off the bridge.
Jody is a British fitness freak and inveterate procrastinator. She spends her working days painting her nails, learning new words and never finishing what she . . .
Vampsterdam by Paul Lock
A child harmed? The culprit found. A beating pulse. My claws expand. A scratch to taste. My eyes flash red. And then I gorge… justice.
Paul is a techno-geek with a love for language, who’s aiming to swap his day job in front of the computer supporting software, for a day job in front of the computer being an author… although he still won’t wear nailpolish J. He can be contacted at ‘email@example.com’.
Three pieces by Chad Greene
Blue My Mind
When her wealthy husband’s affairs turn her world upside down, the old trophy wife who was once a young gymnast starts walking on her hands.
Cuddle by the Fire
After we stomp down the freshly turned dirt with our white cheer shoes, we brush them with our pom-poms and bounce back to the bonfire.
My husband served me with divorce papers because he thought I had aborted his baby. I signed them, though, because it hadn’t been his baby.
A graduate of the Master of Professional Writing Program at the University of Southern California, Chad Greene is an assistant professor of English at Cerritos College. His writing has appeared in the Journal of Microliterature, Nanoism, Southern California Review, The Southlander, and the flash-fiction collection Book by Authors. Earlier this summer, he earned an honorable mention in the Ninth Annual Ultra-Short Competition.
Two pieces by Charlotte Lock
Lucky Lucky Lavender
A four leaf clover. A horseshoe upright. A rainbow. A pot of gold. So I’ve been told. Coins and lanterns. Knocking on wood. Luck.
Hearts And Tarts
A glimpse of sweat. The heart speeds up. The smile lit so bright. It all felt right. A tear of joy. Somebody to love. You.
Charlotte Lock is from Bradford. She is thirteen years old.
Two pieces by Erin Garlock
English class is awesome. I hate the teacher, I hate the subject, but Jenny Heinrich’s pants hang low and I can see her pink panties.
Sunsets on Sundays bring closure. Another weekend is spent, to our homes we must go. On my pillow, her hair. On my mind, our love.
Erin Garlock, having written far too much software using every character on the keyboard except the alphabet, enjoys escaping into the world of real words when the opportunity presents itself. When not actually at a keyboard, he has a penchant for photographing churches with his wife Colleen.
Shine: An Elemental Trilogy of Summer by M.C. Harris
He stood alone at the shoreline, looked her way as a slant of sunlight reached her sterling necklace, the silver spark that caught his eye.
Intelligence, grace, generosity. Her friends called him golden… “Golden Boy,” but only in whispers, as if there were shame in perfection, or in recognizing it.
Suntanned wrap of her legs, copper warmth, is what he remembered long after she was gone, having convinced herself he was too good for her.
Well, nobody’s perfect, M.C. figures. And we grownups know that, don’t we? We know not to expect perfection from ourselves or from anyone else, because that’s just not fair, is it? Not fair to ourselves or to anyone else. Nope. No, Sir. Because perfection is impossible, and as grownups, we know not to ask the impossible, right? In spite of the impending supernova, in spite of every stressful thing that makes us want to roll up into a big baby ball and cry, or makes us want to assume our most-practiced fetal position and just sort of, you know, stop for a couple of minutes, sometimes we just have to be grownups. Am I right? Hello?